February 8, 2007

I’m fine, really


I have missed bootcamp all this week. For one thing, I was fighting off a cold earlier in the week and didn’t feel up to it. But the main reason I’m playing hooky is that there’s some funky stuff happening with my heart rate when I work out. I wear a heart rate monitor when I exercise, and I’m glad I do, so I can see what’s going on. It has been reaching 185, which freaks me out a little. I know I’m not in crazy good shape, but it seems a bit extreme to have a heart rate that high when I don’t feel like I’m overexerting myself at all.

I talked to my trainer about my concerns and she suggested I wear the monitor at home, when I’m basically at rest and see what my resting heart rate is. It’s pretty normal…high 60s to low 70s.

Of more concern to me than the heart rate is some pain I have in my chest. It’s on the right side, which is not usually a sign of cardiac issues, thankfully. But the pain is sharp, like the feeling you get if you swallow a triangular-shaped tortilla chip that isn’t entirely chewed. You know that feeling? Yeah. Sharp pain in chest is kind of freaky. So this combined with the exaggerated heart rate, I thought it best to see the doctor.

So today I did. (I’m fine, really.)

I described my pain to the doctor and judging from my symptoms, she thought it was a pulled muscle. She poked and prodded and when she touched that spot, it hurt, like when you touch a pulled muscle. Sort of bruise-y. She also checked my lung capacity, making me exhale as much as I could through a tube. I passed the test.

She clipped the oxygen thingee to my finger and it showed 100%. I aced that test.

The next step was an ECG (EKG). Never had one of those before. Exciting! The doctor had the technician come in, and why couldn’t it be Dr. McDreamy? Because, well. I had to be sort of naked on top. The nice lady stuck stickers here and there (“and do you have to stick one there?”) and then clipped the clippy things to the stickers and reviewed the paper that the machine spit out. (I am so hip to the medical terminology.)

I passed that test too.

Next week, I’m doing a treadmill test to see if my heart rate is within regular limits. According to my doctor, my current rapid heart rate during exercise could be due to “deconditioning.” OK. the good doctor is too polite. What she’s saying is that I am out of shape. Or at least not at the level of in-shapeness that this insane bootcamp workout requires. As I continue to work out, my heartrate should drop to less scary levels and all will be good in the ‘hood.

Just knowing that the chest pain is merely a pulled muscle, makes it not hurt so much now.

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